Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Wish Me Luck" - Netflix streaming recommendation

I got into the "Downton Abbey" craze late  in the cycle.  I missed the entire first season and by the time I caught up on that season the second season was in full swing.  I watched the second season in one marathon day before it was removed from the PBS website.  While suffering withdrawal, I searched on Netflix for other British shows I may have missed and I can highly recommend "Wish Me Luck", a fascinating 23 episode British show from 1988-90 about women who are recruited as British spies working with the French resistance in WWII.  Although it was a bit off-putting to have all the French characters speaking in British accents, while the Germans did have German accents, it was a fascinating look at how spy networks operated and assisted with the Resistance.  An excellent summary is available from Wikipedia -

Making it even more fascinating for me was that my neighbor, now deceased, had been awarded the Croix de Guerre for his work in France with the French Resistance.  I could just imagine kind, methodical Mr. Green, as one of the unassuming characters who were quietly doing some of the most dangerous work imaginable.

And I've always wondered if Mr. Green was actually Mr. Green or if that was a pseudonym that he had to assume.  My husband and I had always had a theory that Mr. Green was actually a CIA controller for another neighbor who was the operative.  Small things that to us just didn't make sense, when added up gave us a great theory (and I still maintain that it is true).  When I got the full story of his life at his funeral it made my theory even more plausible.  Early career as a communications person in the Army, Croix de Guerre for work in Occupied France, following WWII joined the OSS (predecessor to the CIA), and then spent most of his career with the State Department stationed in Africa and the Middle East, and a final posting in DC where he would meet the planes of foreign dignitaries and top US staff at all hours of the day and night.  (Hmmm, I wonder who was really on those planes???)

There was much mystery to Mr Green although at the end he lived a quiet suburban life with his wife and daughter. He was also a wonderful friend and the neighbor that my children always knew was the person to go to in case of emergency.  The rule at our house was that if there was an emergency, fire, whatever, you should run to Mr. Green's house - it was our own version of a safe house.

So, back to "Wish Me Luck"  - I highly recommend it.  Even though the people seem a bit too well dressed and well fed to have really been in Occupied France, the story line is based on some real people and real events and it is a much better use of your time in front of the TV that most of what is currently being produced.

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